Karuna O'Donnell is highly skilled teacher and teacher trainer who is recognized as a leader in the trauma healing community in Boston and nationwide.
In 2008, she was awarded a fellowship for Leadership in Education to the Harvard Graduate School of Education for work with complexly traumatized youth in Dorchester, MA. In the process of achieving her MEd from Harvard, her identities as an artist, activist and teacher converged as a founding member of Survivor Theatre Project, of which she is now the touring company manager.
Karuna was employed as a consultant by the Trauma Center Yoga program at Justice Resource Institute, Boston's leading trauma center. Karuna implemented a trauma sensitive yoga program with students at the van der Kolk Institute at Glenhaven Academy, where she still teaches.
She was selected to assist the groundbreaking Forrest Yoga Foundation Teacher Training in 2014 and the Yoga, Meditation and Addiction Recovery Conference founded by Nikki Myers and Rolf Gates in 2011 and 2014.
She is certified in Forrest Yoga (Level 3), Trauma Informed Yoga and the Yoga of Twelve Step Recovery.
Karuna is currently providing community-based, trauma-informed healing yoga classes at The Meeting Point in Jamaica Plain, in Boston's low-income communities of color and serving vulnerable populations including women and men in recovery, members of a trauma support group, families and youth in residential trauma treatment.
Karuna is the Yoga for Trauma Specialist and founding member of Hands to Heart Center, a private, non-profit service that provides community-based yoga classes that are accessible, inclusive and inspiring. HTHC classes take place in community centers, schools, homeless shelters, post-incarceration centers and recovery programs in Boston.
She sees yoga and arts learning as her path to becoming an authentic human being with a precious gift to bring to her people. Karuna offers yoga and arts learning as resources for healing in the greater Boston area. Karuna says "facilitating personal acts of courage brightens my spirit tremendously."
Vision Statement: People becoming the central directors in their own healing.
How do people in overwhelming life situations learn, heal and envision their lives beyond present circumstances? I believe that wellness resources and arts learning cultivate resilience in people of all ages. I believe in coalition building between people dedicated to healing and brightening the collective human spirit and striving to end poverty and injustice.
Business Philosophy: My intent is to offer consistent, high quality, trauma and research informed learning experiences that reflect and create a culture of respect and dignity.